Wednesday, August 31 2011
Looking back over Dexter’s journey, the need for a trustworthy companion has never been greater. As the character has become more human, the desire for companionship and a normal life has overtaken the necessitation to kill. It has become—in fact always was—the driving force in his life.
Thursday, August 18 2011
Media formats come and go, subject to the gale-force winds of technology and the retail market. Me, I'm still clinging to my Monty Python collections on VHS.
Wednesday, August 3 2011
All this aircraft is blatantly fetishized, with Bond at one point giving his plane an impulsive and passionate smack of the lips.
Sunday, June 26 2011
We went into Ice Road Truckers with the best intentions for our eight-year-old, I swear. It's the History channel, right? It's educational!
Wednesday, June 8 2011
Walter White didn't just wake up one morning and decide he'd spice up his life by cooking methamphetamine and muscling his way into a business with life-or-death stakes. It was a chain of events.
Wednesday, June 1 2011
They say Bluesman Robert Johnson went to a crossroads one night and sold his soul to the Devil in exchange for his guitar prowess -- but no one ever accused him of serving two masters.
Wednesday, May 25 2011
The history of TV musicals is richer -- and stranger -- than you think. At least three sitcoms were singing long before Glee came along: That's Life, The Monkees and The Partridge Family. Before them, well, if I could sing it to you...
Wednesday, May 11 2011
Old books and even older movies can fend off the creeping anxiety of information overload.
Tuesday, April 12 2011
The Cable Guy and I Love You Phillip Morris show what Jim Carrey is capable of when no one is watching.
Monday, April 4 2011
New DVD provider RaroVideo USA is coming out of the gate with two lavish Criterion-worthy releases: The Clowns and the Fernando Di Leo Crime Collection. One is nominally "arty" and the other "lowdown", but the lines deserve to be blurred.
Sunday, April 3 2011
Military deserter, super-confident ad man, or attentive fiancé. Is there a real Don Draper or is he destined for instability?
Monday, March 21 2011
As in real life, the TV news industry in Broadcast News looks less like a small pond and more like shark-infested waters.
Sunday, March 20 2011
Like Aristophanes in Ancient Greece, Mark Twain in 19th century America, or Ricky Gervais at the Golden Globes, Banksy’s visual humor chastises power in its multiple manifestations by hauling it before the court of public opinion for a well-deserved flogging.
Monday, March 14 2011
What makes Close Encounters of the Third Kind stand out to this day is that it isn’t the usual UFO tale of “us vs them”, like Spielberg’s later remake of War of the Worlds; rather, it's very much a story about Earthlings.
Monday, February 28 2011
Will motion comics become the digital equivalent of the film strip? Merely an interesting artifact of a particular period of media production? Or are they the crude beginnings of a new art form?
Monday, February 21 2011
La Femme Nikita's miserable and corrupted world of moral dead zones and US-sanctioned torture forces its hero to make a real-world choice between pragmatic collusion or principled, perhaps doomed, resistance.
Sunday, February 13 2011
Punk is no vacuum, no airtight, sealed white music form. It's a repository of culture -- magnetized, manifold, and chock-full of merit – that was, and is, impacted by Jewish, black, and Southern experiences.
Thursday, February 10 2011
America Lost and Found: The BBS Story leaves no doubt that BBS Productions was one of the most important players in a cinematic revolution. These seven films make a case for keeping the canvas wide and the road open.
Wednesday, February 9 2011
Henry King's name isn't mentioned when critics start bringing up John Ford or Howard Hawks, and yet even his forgotten and little-seen works hold up better than many of his contemporaries.
Sunday, January 23 2011
As is often the case with classics, what could have been a brilliantly updated film adaptation of The Scarlet Letter was consumed by the Hollywood machine that instead spits out a shallow and action-packed romp with a glossed-over ending.